The Christmas season leaves you feeling tired and bloated as all our healthy habits get washed away by a wave of mince pies, Christmas drinks and roast turkey trimmings. It’s reassuring to think that it’s OK, the New Year is coming and you can fix it then – you will make resolutions to give up carbs, go sugar free and have a dry month. But are you setting yourself up to fail before the year has even started?
Failing to achieve goals can lead to guilt, feelings of failure and ultimately giving up. So what’s the point? Should you just quit having good intentions and give in to temptation?
Evidence shows that by making small, realistic, achievable, goals you are much more likely to succeed in making sustainable changes. Be specific and choose things that you can measure within a given time-frame. Reaching your goals will feel amazing!
Here’s our take on how to make your New Year’s Resolution a success from the very beginning:
|My New Year’s resolution is to…||Recipe for success or doomed to fail?|
|Lose a stone in January||Improve your chances of success by breaking it down to small steps and mini weekly goals.|
|Increase my fruit and veg intake from 2 to 3 portions per day by adding a banana to breakfast every day in January||Great, this is realistic, specific and there is a time limit! It’s a good start that can be sustained and built on.|
|Start going to the gym 5 days a week||This might be fine if you already exercise frequently, however may be over-ambitious if you are starting from scratch! Start small and increase gradually to avoid injury and discouragement.|
|Sign up for a new exercise class and attend once a week until Easter||Choose something you enjoy to maximise motivation. Classes can be a great way to meet new people with the same interests too!|
|Cut out the carbs||Excluding whole food groups is challenging and can put you at risk of nutritional deficiency. Try the next suggestion instead…|
|Include a small portion of wholegrain carbohydrate with each meal||Healthy, manageable & realistic – tick! Now set a date to review your goal & choose a new one.|
|Go from no running to 10km 3 times a week||This is not only unrealistic, it could be dangerous! Speak to a professional for advice about starting a new sport to avoid injuries.|
|Improve my 5k running time by 1 minute per month for 5 months||Sign up for an event with a friend for added support and motivation.|
|Cut down on my sugar in tea and be sugar-less by the end of January||This is a great start to a healthier diet – set a time limit & continue adding small goals to build a set of healthy habits for life.|
So, instead of ending January with feelings of failure, make this the year that you make resolutions that you can stick to and end the year healthier than you started it!